The secret to being the perfect parent is… (drum roll please) … cue hushed whispers and much anticipation…
To know there is no such thing as a perfect parent!
Okay, before you write in with fury and ire, angry at us for leading you down a false path, please try and understand the point of this article. Perfection is impossible to attain, so don’t assume you will get there, and don’t listen to what the parenting experts say, be they the super nannies on the television or the so-called ‘experts’ at the school gates. You are human after all, and there will be times when you will screw up your role as a parent. However, the sooner you realise this, the better, as the less time you will spend letting this fact eat you up, and the more time you will have to try to be a better (if not perfect) parent.
So, while there is no secret formula to perfection (sorry for the deceit), there are ways to improve on your role as a parent, despite your flaws.
Do you forgive us now? We hope so because now we can remind you of those things that you should be focussing on, instead of living with guilt because you aren’t the perfect parent you may be setting yourself too high an expectation for.
As a parent, you should…
Come to understand that you don’t need to have a lot of money to be a ‘perfect’ parent. You don’t need to buy your children everything they want, but only those things they need. Many parents claim to be ‘perfect’ because they have given their children everything they could ever want, but when these are material things, they may just act as sticking plasters over cracks in family relationships, and their kids only become spoiled. So, don’t worry if you can’t buy your kids everything. Don’t worry if you can’t afford expensive family holidays. Visit this website if you need financial aid for trips away, and don’t worry if you have to say ‘no’ to your children’s wants. Parenting is about those less tangible things, such as care, support, and love. And in many ways, you don’t need money to provide these much-needed parenting essentials.
Come to understand that you will do things you will regret. You will shout at your children for little or no reason. You will miss the occasional football game because you have to work overtime. You will give advice to your kids that later proves fruitless. You will do and say all kinds of things you will regret. You are flawed, and you are not perfect, so, don’t try to be! Come to terms with who you are, but then try to be better. Try to learn from your mistakes. Try to make more time for your family. And seek forgiveness when you need to, humbling yourself in front of your children when you need to repair wounds. As a parent, you are learning all of the time, and because of this, you are still a long way off from being perfect. And that is okay!!
So, there is no secret to being a perfect parent. But at least you understand that now, or at least we hope you do. However, you can be the best you can be. You can give what you can give. You can love as much as you can love. And you can take steps to be a better parent, even if you are still not quite that parent you have always envisioned in your head.
Or perhaps we have it wrong. If you are the perfect parent, let us know! However, we know, you know, and your children will know, that you are probably not being entirely truthful!
This is a collaborative post.